The narrow bank between the canal and the River Severn to the north of the Severn Railway Bridge has long been used as a graveyard for old barges, with the aim of protecting the bank from erosion by the strong currents in the river.
The first barges were dumped on the bank in 1909 when it was realised that a new channel was developing near to the shore, and further craft were added at intervals up to the early 1970s. Each vessel was taken out of Sharpness Dock on a high spring tide, towed by a tug towards the shore and released so that it charged up the bank as far as possible. Then holes were knocked in the hull to allow subsequent tides to deposit silt inside

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